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tv   BBC World News America  WETA  July 22, 2011 6:00pm-6:30pm EDT

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>> this is "bbc world news america." funding for this presentation is made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. ♪ >> union bank has put its global expertise to work for a wide range of companies. what can we do for you?
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>> and now, "bbc world news america." >> this is bbc world news america reporting from washington, i'm laura trevelyan. twin targets in attacks in oslo and blast ripped through buildings -- government buildings in oslo while a gun man attacks a youth camp, leaving 10 dead. and breaking up is hard to do. why some gay couples are finding it impossible to obtain a divorce.
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welcome to our viewers on pbs in america and around the globe. norway has not seen violence like this since the second world war. tonight, the country is reeling. first came a huge explosion in the capital of oslo that killed at least seven people and left many more injured when a bomb ripped through government buildings, including the prime minister's office. then in an attack police say was linked, a gun man opened fire at a youth rally, killing at least 10. starting our coverage frank gardner. >> an atrocity in oslo. a huge bomb blast return through the center of the norwegian capital, killing, mating,
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destroying. it could have been so much worse if so many residents had not left for the weekend. norway posted prime minister, if possible target escaped >> we were told to go into the back room and we came out into the street they said it was bombed. and then, confusingly, a second attack two hours later on a nearby island. in nordic looking man began shooting at the political views camp for the ruling party. some tried to escape by swimming away. he reportedly shot at them as they fled. now he has been arrested. police have the biggest living clue.
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>> i have a message for all of norway. you will not destroy us. you will not destroy our democracy. >> norway mobilize every available facility. with the we've canceled, experts were recalled from holiday. -- with leave canceled, experts were recalled from holiday. condolences were also offered. >> i want to personally extend my condolences to the people of norway, and it is a reminder that the entire international committee has a stake in this kind of terror occurring -- in preventing this kind of terror from occurring. >> forensics, cctv, i would his accounts and analysis -- eyewitness accounts and analysis
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will all be fed in. >> and for the latest from norway, we can speak by phone to a journalist in oslo. the gun man arrested on the island was norwegian. what do you make of this news? >> yes, we have confirmed that this is a 32-year-old norwegian man. he is being interrogated as we speak by norwegian police. police say they do connect these two incidents together, but they do not know yet exactly how. obviously, this is shocking. and obviously, completely devastating in the city center here. >> and is there any record of anti-government homegrown extremist groups in norway?
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>> no, not really. that is also why this is quite shocking as well. we have had a few arrest in the last few years, but no incidents of any sort that could be a lead up to such a big attack as we have seen today. there is one man arrested and the police cannot say just yet if there are other people involved, but it is difficult to see how one man on the good cause so much devastation. >> the attacks were definitely targeted against political power in norway. any idea as to why? >> not for the moment. this is obviously a norwegian man. previous speculation were more
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surrounding that norway is involved in afghanistan and libya at the moment, but we do not know whether this has anything to do with these incidents today. this was the labor party youth camp that is held on the island every year. the prime minister is the head of the labor party here in norway. it seemed very targeted toward the government and toward maybe the party -- that party especially, without knowing exactly why that party has been targeted. >> thank you. and for more on who may have been behind this -- these attacks, you can -- let's go to frank gardner in london. what is your analysis based on the information we have so far? >> i have to say the right now
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it is looking more like a timothy mcveigh style attack. the mayor also told us a short while ago that the same person carried out the bombing in central oslo and then two hours later the shooting spree on the island. the distance is only about 3445 minutes. the attacks were separated by two hours -- only about 30 to 45 minutes. the attacks were separated by two hours. the chief suspect, the man who has been arrested while shooting, they have a mass of living klum in their hands. i would expect that in the next 24 hours we will have a preliminary statement. i would expect him to be charged. it remains to be seen what he will be charged with. the key is whether he had people behind him helping him in a wider network. here in the u.k. has been focused around what political
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motives someone might have for hitting norway. in other words, it could be some kind of outside plot, possibly linked to al qaeda, etc. right now, if you look at the backs on the ground -- the facts on the ground, there's a one man so far, he is 32, norwegian. he has attacked the central power, but also a political party youth camp on the island. there is the possibility that this is a norwegian domestic extremist. >> does norway have any anti- government extremist groups that you are aware of? >> not that i am aware of. i have posed this question to people and they say no. norwegians will tell you that they have had threats in the past from al qaeda-linked groups.
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there was an alleged plot under arrest last year and a number of people were arrested. it was linked to peripheral lead to the whole danish cartoon issue. norwegians are absolutely battled but -- baffled by this. i think people are starting to look for other explanations. the fact is, this man is a norwegian. he is a lawyer. i presume he is talking to the present -- the police. he seems to be incredibly organized. there is talk of 100 kilos surrounding 220 tons of explosives used in the oslo bombing. and then he apparently got himself into this island and have more than one weapon. he was rearming himself as he
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went on his shooting spree. rather like the mumbai attacks a few years ago. there is a possibility that this could turn out to have nothing to do with al qaeda or jihadist, but it will also baffle norwegians. you saw that speech by president obama there. he has offered his condolences and condemnation for the person or people carrying out these attacks. >> in other news, hundreds of thousands of syrians are reported to have been taking part in anti-government rallies. activists say eight people have been killed, including three in a haut -- aleho and 2 in hong.
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the wartime leader of ethnic serbs in eastern croatia faces charges, including crimes against humanity in the international court of the hague. now to somalia, where islamic a defiants have given statement to the bbc. they accuse the u.n. of exaggerating the drop for political reasons. al-shabab's spokesperson said the foreign aid agencies -- its ban on foreign aid agencies remain in place. you may find some of these imaging -- images distressing. >> in kenya, the body of a child lies next to those still fighting for life.
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>> there is still so much need. there is no flesh underneath. >> the combination of war and drought have created a devastating emergency, displacing huge numbers of somalis within their own country, too. the capital of mogadishu is not safe, but still a magnet for people in need. >> she is 80 years old and is taking care of five children. she is the grandmother. the founder and mother died because of disease. -- the father and mother died because of disease. >> al-shabab, which has admitted to links with al qaeda, is fighting the government of somalia. they control some of the southern and central parts of the country. the government is in control of just the center of the capital.
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it seems that many are starving to death. the u.n. declared this week that a state of famine now exists. al-shabab said it will continue to control the activities of agencies. >> the agency's we band before are still banned. some of those were involved in political activity, others were destroying the lives of our people. we had to ban them, too. the biggest responsibility lies with the united nations. their report says there is famine in somalia. we say this is utter nonsense. it is sheer propaganda. >> to the u.n., the international community face is -- a mammoth challenge. >> it is very risky, but we have to reach people. they are not making it all way to mogadishu. these are the lucky ones, those
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who made it here, and even these centers are overrun. >> in northeastern kenya, once proud, now they need food aid simply to survive. but it is the conflict in somalia that has created a famine and the worst drought in this region in decades. >> this sunday, more than 800 same-sex couples will officially tied the knot in new york. it is the latest state to recognize gay marriage. some couples who have charged the same path and other places are now finding getting the divorce is the biggest hurdle. one couple are now fighting to get there -- and their union. >> jessica got married three years ago. it now though, she wants a divorce. >> i think we, like a lot of young couples, were very much in love. but we got to a point in our relationship that we wanted --
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we realized we wanted different things in life. >> like other gay couples, jessica and her partner had to travel to california to get married, when just for a few months gay unions became legal there. the problem now is that jessica lives in the state of maryland where gay marriage is not recognized or legal. she is not able to get a divorce. let's breakups are emotional to begin with. and then -- >> merika sorry marshal to begin with. and then to have to go through the legal troubles and be denied being able to move forward. to be told you are not able to move forward and financially protect yourself is hard. >> efforts to legalize gay marriage in maryland have been too controversial. of the state attorney general has written a paper saying that
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merriman should recognize same- sex marriages performed in other states -- maryland it should recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. if that were to happen, they could have their divorce. >> the court will ultimately recognize same-sex couples that want to get divorced. that will be a step in the right direction toward breaking down the wall against same-sex marriage in maryland. decision to york's legalize gay marriage, couples there can now start getting married. despite opposition in other parts of america, there is a growing belief more states will eventually follow suit. in the meantime, couples who want a divorce -- gay couples who want a divorce are stuck in a state of limbo. she cannot get a divorce in home state of maryland. if she lived just a walk away in washington d.c., her rights would be very different.
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>> you are watching bbc world news america. still to come, more on our top stories. the attacks in norway, which have left at least seven people dead and shaken the capitol to the court. -- to its core. in libya, representatives of colonel gaddafi's government have said they are ready to will more talks with senior u.s. officials. it comes after more than four months of nato bombings. despite a growing western consensus that he be allowed to stay in his homeland if he relinquishes power, some want him to stand trial. >> which one man still dominates life in tripoli? the answer can almost be seen from space. tonight, colonel gaddafi supporters and unveiled a giant picture of their leader.
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they say it is the biggest banner in the world. to some, it is also a good luck charm. >> i am not worried because i am safe here in libya. >> are you worried about his safety? do you want to protect him? >> we will not protect him. >> the government invited us to watch loyal demonstrators in tripoli square. >> wherever you look there are pictures of colonel gaddafi. but the leader himself does not appear in public because of nato's bombing campaign. his supporters have to make do with pictures and photographs. even in his -- >> even in his hometown he does not make an appearance. it is hard to get a sense of life of government control beyond the demonstrations. we did have these shots in the
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evening in tripoli. right here, no immediate sense of siege. if people are worried about losing a leader, or a war, they are hiding it well. >> now to the u.s. debt talks, which -- with the clock ticking down to the of the second deadline. the speaker of the house, john boehner has called for negotiations with president obama. >> in the interest of being serious about deficit reduction, i was willing to take a lot of heat from my party and i spoke to democratic leaders yesterday, and although they did not sign off on a plan, they were willing to engage -- engage in serious negotiations.
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despite a lot of heat from a lot of interest groups around the country in order to make sure we actually dealt with this problem. it is hard to understand why speaker boehner would walk away from this kind of deal. and frankly, if you look at the commentary out there, there are a lot of republicans that are puzzled. >> joining me now for the most recent developments is washington correspondent marc is george. what seems to have gone wrong? >> it seems an extraordinary turnaround from last 24 hours when we saw this note -- the two sides slowly edging toward a deal. suddenly, those talks are off. mr. obama has come out literally in the last few minutes and said that he finds mr. boehner's actions very hard to understand. he said there was an
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extraordinary deal on the table, one which was asking for less than this group of bipartisan senators earlier in the week had put forward. he is at a loss to understand why, indeed, the u.s. house speaker has walked away. >> this could be just brinkmanship, could it? >> there is certainly a lot of that. on one side the democrats are talking about the millionaires and billionaires that need to be hit. on the other side, republicans are talking about job creators. you cannot have those people and get the economy going again. they are both looking for the best deal possible. >> thank you. a massive explosion has ripped through norway's's capital, leaving at least seven people dead. and a man dressed as a police officer opened fire at a youth camp connected to the ruling
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party, killing at least 10. for more on these attacks and how it has affected the people of norway, i spoke to the man who was the u.n. head of humanitarian aid there. >> we have not seen this kind of violence since the second world war. norway is a very peaceful place. first, we have a bomb that is an enormous explosion. it must have been hundreds of kilos of explosive material. all the windows in central oslo, essentially, are shattered. and then to a half hours later, perhaps more shocking, a man starts to kill systematically labor usyouth activists at a cap where the prime minister was supposed to visit the next
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morning. the images on the television screens are beyond belief. >> what possible motive could there be for these attacks? >> there are many, many speculations. but everybody is being very careful not to jump to conclusions because of norway is a very small nation, but very active in its international operations from afghanistan to be at and what not. however, it could be a domestic issue. it could be a domestic terrorist. it could be anything. that is why the prime minister and all of us who are commenting on this are saying that we now have to stay with our beliefs, our human rights, our rule of law and not jump to any conclusions. and not change our way of life, which is exactly what the
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>> nonetheless, you think this will change norwegian society? >> i fear it may. i hope not. but this very open, liberal democracy may have lost its innocence. it may lead to a lot of things. of course, all government buildings are without the bomb blast film. that is why many lives were lost because of the shattered window glass hitting them. that is something we can remedy easily. will it change the open society way that politicians go among us? what you have a youth camp that always gets the leading labour politicians to come and sit and discuss. is that over? i hope not. i hope we can continue like we
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were despite these terrorist attacks. >> does norway have any history of homegrown extremism? >> not that much. we have had some right-wing extremists, some left-wing extremists. that is a possibility, just as we all know there are international groups, including al qaeda, that have threatened to norway. it wants to hit norway because of its international operations. >> thank you for joining us. that brings us to the end of today's broadcast. you can get constant updates at our website. and to see what we are working on, be sure to check out our fenn -- our facebook page. i'm laura trevelyan. from all of us here at bbc world
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news america, thank you for watching. have a good weekend. >> make sense of international news at >> funding was made possible by the freeman foundation of new york, stowe, vermont, and honolulu. newman's own foundation. and union bank. ♪
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>> union bank has put its financial strength to work for a wide range of companies. what can we do for you? >> "bbc world news america" was presented by kcet, los angeles.
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